The life of an atheist is sad because it is going nowhere. Once there was an atheist who died and was buried. On his tombstone was written, “Here lies an atheist – All dressed up and no place to go.” When atheist Christopher Hitchens died, I tweeted, “Either Hitchens knows that he was wrong, or he does not know that he was right.” Of course, I was attacked viciously by the atheist Twitter community.
In some ways I have great respect for atheists. They believe strongly in evidence. They are skeptical. They reject non-scientific mumbo jumbo and the claims of pseudo-science. They reject superstition. They are willing to change their minds as evidence changes. Even if they have not found the right answers, at least they are asking life’s big questions.
At the same time, I deeply pity atheists. They value evidence above all else, but they cannot see the overwhelming evidence for God’s existence. It is intellectually dishonest to deny God’s existence since all creation shouts, “God is THERE!” As G. K. Chesterton wrote in one of his Father Brown mysteries: “What we all dread most,” said the priest, in a low voice, “Is a maze with no centre. That is why atheism is only a nightmare.” Others have echoed Chesterton. Daniel Kolenda wrote, “The devil loves atheists, although he is not one himself.” Or as the Usual Suspects movie puts it, “The greatest trick the devil ever pulled was convincing the world he didn’t exist.”
But there is hope, even for the hardcore atheist. Perhaps the patron saint of the atheist is “doubting” Thomas. He demanded verifiable proof of Jesus’ resurrection.
Now Thomas…one of the twelve, was not with them when Jesus came. The other disciples therefore said to him, “We have seen the Lord. So he said to them, “Unless I see in His hands the print of the nails, and put my finger into the print of the nails, and put my hand into His side, I will not believe.” And after eight days His disciples were again inside, and Thomas with them. Jesus came, the doors being shut, and stood in the midst, and said, “Peace to you!” Then He said to Thomas, “Reach your finger here, and look at My hands; and reach your hand here, and put it into My side. Do not be unbelieving, but believing.” And Thomas answered and said to Him, “My Lord and my God!” Jesus said to him, “Thomas, because you have seen Me, you have believed. Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.” (John 20:24-29).
Jesus offers Thomas the chance to test the resurrection with his own finger, but Jesus says it is better to believe without proof. In the same way, God is willing to offer proof to the atheist who sincerely searches for it, but those who believe without seeing will be even more blessed.
True wisdom for life begins with the acknowledgment of God’s existence. “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge: but fools despise wisdom and instruction” (Proverbs 1:7). Ultimately, God is discovered by those who look for Him. As Jesus said to the two blind men who were seeking healing, “According to your faith be it done onto you” (Matthew 9:29). Your faith determines whether you ever see God.
There is an old saying: “Don’t put off till tomorrow what you can do today.” The Bible says, “Now is the day of salvation” (2 Corinthians 6:2), and that “Today, if you will hear his voice” (Hebrews 3:7), you can be saved. Whatever you have been believing about God, today is a day for faith, today is a day to be daring. You’ve read some of the evidence. You’ve examined some of the proof. Today you can choose to believe that God exists, that God created you, that God loves you, and that God is a close as a simple prayer.
Perhaps you are tempted to put off making a decision. That’s now how it works. You are must choose your own adventure. To not choose is just to keep choosing the story you’ve been telling yourself, or the one that you believe because others have told you it must be true. The Bible promises that eventually, every knee will bow and every tongue will confess that Jesus is Lord (Romans 14:11 and Philippians 2.10-11). No matter how you choose today, someday everyone be presented with irrefutable proof of God’s existence when he or she stands in front of the throne of God Almighty. But, by then it will be too late to choose, too late to dare, for that is the end of your story.
But, today is not too late. Your adventure waits. Call on Jesus, the Son of God, and He will save you and set your story on a whole new course. God is THERE. God does CARE. Will you DARE to choose to follow Him?
If so, say this simple prayer. The prayer itself will not save you, it is by putting your faith in Jesus Christ that you will be saved. Repeating this prayer is a way for you to tell God that you are trusting in Jesus Christ for your salvation:
Dear God in Heaven, I believe You exist and I need You in my life. Thank you for caring for me. I believe Jesus is the Son of God and I believe He died on a cross for my sins and that He rose from the dead. Today, I dare to put my faith and trust in Jesus. I repent of all the things I have done wrong and for my unbelief. Please forgive me and give me a brand new start. Jesus, I make you the Lord of my life. In the name of Jesus I pray, Amen.
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About the Author: Dr. Daniel King is a missionary evangelist who has traveled to over seventy nations in his quest for souls. His goal is to lead 1,000,000 people to Jesus every year through massive Gospel Festivals, distribution of literature, and leadership training. Because of his experience and research on evangelism, he is widely regarded as one of the world’s leading experts in mass evangelism. As an evangelist, he has a deep interest in using apologetics to convince skeptics that God is real.